California Out of the Box Classes
I have known Tracy since I began homeschooling in 2013. I remember being a part of a homeschool day program in Pasadena with our kids, and attending an orientation meeting with her then year-old son Jeremy in her lap. (Jeremy was a third grade student in my online California Out of the Box class!) In addition to sharing many friends in common, we have journeyed together as fellow artists; she creates beautiful nature-inspired art. I know families who take her class will be blessed in many ways
~ Christine Echeverri, July 2021
This post features excerpts from an interview between author Christine Echeverri and California Out of the Box online instructor Tracy Yeoh.
What drew you to homeschooling in the first place? Why did you decide to homeschool?
When our eldest was about to enter Kindergarten, we were deciding between the public Mandarin immersion program and homeschooling. As we prayed about our decision, our conviction weighed more heavily towards homeschooling and our journey began. We wanted our children to learn in their home environment, to be socialized by their family, and for us to be the primary influencers in their lives.
I heard your high school daughter authored and published a book! Tell me her process and how you helped her.
Our eldest, Mira, has always had a penchant for writing. I remember when she put together a book of short stories when she was in Kindergarten. Mira has always been self-motivated and self-directed. While we were shut down in 2020, she had the goal to write a book. She had never quite finished a project like that before. She spent hours writing during the summer and finished it. However, the more tedious task of editing was before her. We decided to go the self-publishing route with Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). As parents, we were involved in some of the editing, the setting up of accounts, and completing the steps involved in publishing. However, she did all the illustrations and editing details and worked at it until it was ready to be printed.
What are some resources that were helpful to you as you homeschooled?
I often found that the best resources that were helpful to me were other moms who were homeschooling. They are the ones who shared about how they homeschooled that inspired me. They are the ones who shared which materials they were using and what worked well. They were the ones who encouraged me to keep going. I think co-ops like Fundamentals Academy in Arcadia and charter schools can provide opportunities to meet other like-minded parents who are on the journey of homeschooling and can provide that social-emotional support that one needs to keep going.
What do you hope your students take away from your California class?
I hope the kids in my class will come away with a deeper appreciation for the state of California and its history, a love for good stories, an enjoyment of nature, a sense of accomplishment, and an affirmation for their ability to express their unique selves with others.
There are a lot of online classes out there. What do you think makes a successful online class?
I think a successful online class is one in which the students feel comfortable and safe, they are creatively and actively engaged, and there are opportunities to interact with one another in mutually encouraging ways.
To read Tracy’s bio, see this page.